Ad­vent Re­fec­tion

Sun.Star Pampanga - - OPINION -

Once again the Chris­tian world is in the midst of Ad­vent – a joy­ful sea­son of four Sun­days pre­ced­ing Christ­mas.

Dur­ing Ad­vent, we com­mem­o­rate that long time in which the peo­ple of God in the Old Tes­ta­ment waited pa­tiently for the First Com­ing of Je­sus Christ as a young baby – the Son of God who hum­bled him­self to be born in hu­man flesh by the Blessed Vir­gin Mary. We also high­light the present time in which we, the peo­ple of the New Tes­ta­ment, wait ea­gerly for the Sec­ond Com­ing of Christ as the King of kings and the Lord of lords who will judge each one ac­cord­ing to his deeds and pro­nounce ei­ther eter­nal life in heaven or eter­nal damna­tion in hell.

Last Sun­day, the gospel read­ing (Mark 13:33-37) fo­cused on watch­ful­ness and alert­ness, for we do not know the ex­act time when Je­sus comes again. This Sun­day, the gospel (Mark 1:1-8) re­vis­its the min­istry of John the Bap­tist to pre­pare the way for the Lord. On the third Sun­day, the gospel (John 1:6-8, 19-28) elab­o­rates on the role of John as fore­run­ner of Christ— in­fe­rior to Je­sus in all re­spects, “whose san­dal strap he was un­wor­thy to un­tie.” And in the fourth Sun­day, we read in the gospel (Luke 1:26-38) the ac­count of the An­nun­ci­a­tion – how the An­gel Gabriel re­vealed to Mary God’s plan of In­car­na­tion, and how Mary, the hum­ble ser­vant of God, said yes to the Di­vine will.

This sea­son is thus a sea­son of re­flec­tion, prepa­ra­tion and an­tic­i­pa­tion. Let us re­mem­ber with grat­i­tude how our lov­ing Father ful­filled his prom­ise of send­ing his only be­got­ten Son to be like us in all re­spects ex­cept sin, and to save us from the con­se­quences of our wicked­ness. Let us pre­pare our hearts to re­ceive and cher­ish this gift of sal­va­tion, just as we per­se­vere ev­ery­day, that we may be counted wor­thy when he comes again at the end of time or when our life on earth reaches its com­ple­tion, whichever comes first.

Like­wise, let us lis­ten to prophets like John the Bap­tist who ad­vo­cate ac­tive wait­ing, that is, mend­ing our ways and bear­ing fruits of good works even when days be­come months, months be­come years, and years be­come decades, for in God, one day is like a thou­sand years, and a thou­sand years are like a day (2 Peter 3:8). No­body knows the ex­act hour of Je­sus’ Sec­ond Com­ing (Matthew 24:36) but the Bi­ble, the word of God, is not lack­ing in prophe­cies and in­struc­tions.

And let us pray that like Mary, we may have an obe­di­ent heart to ac­cept God’s design, re­mem­ber­ing that God’s thoughts are al­ways higher than our thoughts, and his ways are al­ways bet­ter than our ways (Isa­iah 55:8-9), and that ev­ery­thing works to­gether for the good of those who love God and are called ac­cord­ing to his pur­pose (Ro­mans 8:28).

Have a mean­ing­ful Ad­vent Sea­son, ever yone.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.